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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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on November 2, 2013
I love this book and would rate it higher if only I could see the graphics without a magnifying glass. A larger book (physical size) would have made this book incredible.
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on October 28, 2013
I found the actual content of the book both interesting and entertaining. I'm not an aficionado though,
so I can't speak to how well-known the chosen infographics might be to someone with more than a passing
interest in the subject.

I was however more than a little annoyed at the poor print setting. The binding of the book prevents it from
being opened wide enough to fully see the infographics that cross the center line. This meant that it was
difficult to impossible to read text that happened to cross over the center (is it called the gutter?).
I'd say this affected about 30% of the infographics and was annoying enough that I found myself wondering
how this kind of oversight could happen.

Sadly, I bought the physical version because the reviews on the kindle version say that the images are too
small to enjoy, so I can't even suggest that alternative.

When are publishers going to solve the problem of formatting image-heavy books for tablets and e-ink devices?
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VINE VOICEon November 21, 2013
It is a book of exceptional infographics. It would be a whole lot better if they were large enough to read. The book is PURELY to show the superb design and if you want it only for that reason, you'll give this a full five stars. It truly is a collection of extremely well designed, very well thought out informational graphics.

However, if, like me, you actually wanted to READ all the graphics, you will be somewhat disappointed. Some simply are too small to read. Some don't even have the whole graphic there. The publisher doesn't try and sell the book as presenting the info, just the design, but ... I really wanted to read the charts fully and I assumed I would be able to do so. My mistake, I guess.
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on November 10, 2013
Content is laid out over the center crease. Bad layout of images and book is already fall apart to a degree.
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on October 8, 2013
This lovely book was on the front porch as I returned home last night. It was 3 hours before I put it down.

There are some very well done data visualizations here. One in particular on a better food label was great on showing how to look at the information from a completely different perspective. And covers a broader range of data in a more succinct space. Loved it.

While at times the content of some specific data visualizations wasn't relevant to me, it didn't matter. The author did a great job of choosing such a diverse group of infographics to show. I was always drawn in to learn something about how I can better present things in my projects as a designer.

His choice for the star of the book was spectacular and informative. This book will be one that remains within reach when I struggling and need a jumping off point to decide how I will present data. Let's hope our future looks much more like this book and much less like an excel bar chart.
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on October 9, 2013
What an amazing book! The variety and quality of the graphics in this collection is incredible. From data rich displays of technical information to whimsical social commentaries this book covers the spectrum of how ideas and information can be communicated visually. As a graphic designer this book will be an invaluable resource.
Oh, and the layout and design of the book are fantastic too.
Well done.
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on December 27, 2013
Infographics take time, planning, supporting data and: plenty of inspiration. This small book offers plenty of the latter -- along with a 'backstory' about each graphic featured: fantastic!

The book is produced on very high quality paper with stunning color, albeit it the book is a bit smallish. Regardless, you'll do well to order it, then browse it and be inspired by it repeatedly... Enjoy!
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on December 12, 2013
I liked this book very much as I am a visual person and anytime I can look at a picture instead of reading a text I will jump at the opportunity. I give the book four stars for the overall beauty of the designs and also for the very informative Forward by Gareth Cook and Introduction by David Byrne. Please read both the Forward and Introduction as they are very illuminating.The designs range from the powerfully simple (Gun Ownership Rates by Country – pp. 86-89) to the very complex (Political Moneyball – pp. 144-145) and are divided into three sections: You, Us, and The Material World. There is also a separate section for the Top 10 Interactive Graphics (selected by Eric Rodenbeck).

I reserve giving the fifth star because some of the infographics are reduced to such a small size as to be virtually unreadable. Even accounting for the massive size of Influence: A Brief History (pp. 54-59) by extending it into a fold-out page, the size of the type remains extremely small. As a graphic, it’s beautiful; as information, it’s useless.

I also reduced my rating to four stars because the interactive section never defines that term although Mr.Rodenbeck hints at a definition by referring to the ability to “pan and zoom.” What makes a graphic interactive? I take it to mean that these infographics must be viewed online in order to appreciate the way the variables interact with each other over time (pan and zoom?), but again, that is just my guess. Being what it is, a static medium with a limited physical dimension, the book freezes the motion of the graphics and sometimes shrinks them to near illegibility (no zooming). To the book’s credit, a link is provided to the publisher’s website where these graphics may be seen in their interactive form.

For the rest of the “non-interactive” graphics that constitute the majority, while there are no direct links to them on the publisher’s website, each infographic includes its online reference. The few references I took the trouble to look up were still accessible even late in 2013. By the way, many of these online sources are “interactive.”
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on November 25, 2013
As a result of carpooling issues, I bought my 11-year-old The Best American Infographics 2013. Though not big on sitting still, she was inadvertently engaged by infographics like “America’s Most Popular Birthdays,” “Short Guys Can Dunk,” and “Cat Power” (a 3D image that analyzes how every part of a cheetah’s body contributes to its speed). She asked to bring it to school the next day. For the rest of the week, she was swarmed by middle schoolers similarly drawn in by the visually accessible and thought-provoking analysis of topics ranging from gun ownership (country-by-country), to gay rights (state-by-state), to the percentage of women in our national workforce. Our Head of School said he’d like to see the book used in math, science and ethics classes. So would I!
Back at home, some of our less academic favorite infographics detail which fruits and vegetables are in season, offer guidance regarding “Feelings That Cannot Be Expressed in English,” and answer the eternal question, “Should I Check Email?” I’m also thinking this book has the answer to another eternal question: “What should I get my nieces and nephews for the holidays?”
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on October 28, 2013
The book is an amazing collection of informational graphics. Clever and well designed graphics all around. It's a treat to explore...with the exception it could have used a better publication designer or there was a misunderstanding with the printer specs because many graphics are sucked into the gutter. It's unfortunate the artwork is damaged by this oversight.
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